Home>Tutorials>Basic Tutorials>
Clear Text Message Boards
E-mail this tutorial to a friendEmail to a Friend

Clear Text Message Boards
Created by:Graham

This is a simple tutorial on how to create outlined text in PSP. It was originally written for PSP 5 and has been adapted to PSP 7.
Download the attachments for this tutorial Download File
You will first need to load an image of your choice, or you can use the one provided with the download file on the left.
Standard Toolbar - Open (image) button

Open your image (or the image "/tutorial/html/tutbasic/cleartxt_image.jpg" from the download) in Paint Shop Pro.

You now need to make room for your text, so check the size of your image (View || Image Information) and write down the dimensions (for the image from the download this would be 184x154).


Standard Toolbar - New (image) button
Now create a new image. If you want the text at the top or bottom or both, then change the Width to the same as the width dimension you wrote down earlier, and change the Height to allow for the text. If you want the text at the side, then change the height to the same as the height dimension you wrote down earlier and change the Width to allow for the text. (For my example here, I had a width of 185 and a height of 285.) All other settings are:
Width and Height = (your choice) Pixels
Resolution = 72 Pixels/Inch
Background color = White
Image Type = 16.7 million colors (24bit)

Standard Toolbar - Copy button
Click on the image that you have decided to use, press Ctrl+C (Edit || Copy) to copy the image to the clipboard, then click on your new blank image and press Ctrl+E (Edit || Paste || As New Selection) to paste it into your image. Place the image where you want it to be, deselect with Ctrl+D (Selections || Select None) and close your original image.
Standard Toolbar - Open (image) button We now need a background for our image, so take a background of your choice or open the one provided in the download file ("/tutorial/html/tutbasic/cleartxt_pattern.jpg").
Tool Palette - Flood Fill toolStandard Toolbar - Toggle Tool Options Window button

Click on the Flood-Fill tool on the tool palette. If your Tool Options palette isn't open, click on the toggle button to bring it into view. Use these settings:
Blend mode = Normal
Match mode = RGB Value
Tolerance = 100
Opacity = 100
Sample merged = unchecked

Set your foreground style to Pattern (click in the foreground style box and choose the second icon from the right). Then click into your foreground style box to open the Pattern dialog box, click into the pattern shown and scroll up to the beginning of the list. Choose the pattern image you just opened ("/tutorial/html/tutbasic/cleartxt_pattern.jpg").

Your textures should be set to None. Make sure that the "Lock" option beneath your texture boxes is unchecked since we need these settings again for the Flood-Fill tool.

Now click on the white background in your image to fill it with your pattern, click once more into the space between body and arm of the child. You can now close your pattern image.

Standard Toolbar - New (image) button Open a new image with the same dimensions as your first one (just click on the New Image button and click on OK in the dialog box).
Tool Palette - Text tool

Click on the Text tool on the Tool palette, then click anywhere inside the new blank canvas. For "Name" use a font that is chunky; I've used one called Roland, don't panic if you have not got it, just use whatever you think. Use the following settings:
Name = your font
Size = what you think looks best
Script = Western
Style: Stroke = None, Fill = Solid Color: a bright yellow
(Red=255, Green=255, Blue=0)
Textures: Stroke and Fill = None
Text = your choice, Bold, Italic, centered
Create as: Floating = checked
Antialias = unchecked

Click on OK and place your text into the canvas, one line at a time. Deselect by right-clicking into your image.

To start making the text clear go to Effects || Edge || Find All. Now you have a black image with blue, outlined text.

(See also the note at the end of the tutorial about outlined text in PSP 7.)

Tool Palette - Flood Fill tool

Next use the Flood-Fill tool which should still have the same settings as before and click into the black areas to fill all of the image with your pattern.

Don't forget the inner areas of the letters of your text!


Tool Palette - Selection tool
Click on the Selection tool on the tool palette and use these settings:
Selection type = Rectangle
Feather = 0
Anitalias = unchecked

Place the cursor at the top left of the first line of text and, keeping the left mouse button pressed, drag across the text to the lower right.

Next press Ctrl+C (Edit || Copy), click on the image where your text is to be placed (the image with your picture on it) and press Ctrl+E (Edit || Paste || As New Selection).

Try to place your text in the image so that the pattern of the image background is continued with your text selection.

Do this for all your text. Deselect by right-clicking into your image. You can now close the image with only your text on it.

You can now add any effects that you would like to the text. I will leave that to your own imaginations.

The image on the left shows what I have done with mine.

Some tips: With your Magic Wand tool you can select the outline of your text and fill it with other colors, with gradients or patterns.

If you think the outline is too thin, go to Selections || Modify || Expand after selecting the outline.

Also with the Magic Wand, you can select the areas within your outlined text and fill them with any color, gradient or pattern.

To subtract a part of the selection, use the Lasso tool (maybe Point-to-Point) and hold your Ctrl key pressed while selecting the areas that you want to subtract from your selection.

As I mentioned at the beginning, you can of course also place your text at the side of the picture.

Here is the same image (you can just see Grandpa's back), but with the writing at the side and differently decorated.




Tool Palette - Text tool














Outlined text in PSP 7

With PSP 7 you have the choice to create outlined text with your Text tool. To do that, first set the width and the line style that you'd like for your outline in the Tool Options palette.

Then click into your image where you want your text to be. Choose your font, size, etc. For the Styles, set:
Stroke = Solid Color, Gradient, Pattern, whatever you like
Fill = None

If you now click on OK, you've got an outlined text! (Tip: If you put your text as vector text on a separate layer, you can change its appearance afterwards by selecting it with the Vector-Object Selection tool and clicking on the Properties button in the Tool Options palette.)

There's a difference to the technique described in this tutorial, however: With the outline feature of PSP 7, the outline is added to the original font that may not always be what you want. Also, the colouring effect may be different.

On the left, the image on top is made with the technique described in this tutorial; afterwards the blue outlines were selected and filled with a gradient. For the bottom image, the text was directly created as an outlined text, with the same gradient for the Stroke.